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Woodside to be featured in new Ag Museum exhibit

Delaware Agricultural Museum and Village Coming to the - Delaware Agricultural Museum and Village - February 4 - April 15, 2023


Crossroads: Change in Rural America

This exhibit will include many scenes like this, comparing 1907 B&W photos with today.
Looking east down Main St. from the RR crossing. On the right is the Woodside Post Office

In 1900, about 40% of Americans lived in rural areas, By 2010, less than 18% of the U.S. population lived in rural areas. In just over a century, massive economic and social changes led to massive growth of America's urban areas. Yet, less than 10% of the U.S. landmass is considered urban.

Many Americans assume that rural communities are endangered and hanging on by a thread—suffering from outmigration, ailing schools, and overused land. But that perception is far from true in many areas. Many rural Americans work hard to sustain their communities. Why should revitalizing the rural places left behind matter to those who remain, those who left, and those who will come in the future? All Americans benefit from rural America's successes. We can learn great things from listening to those stories. There is much more to the story of rural America! Crossroads: Change in Rural America offers small towns a chance to look at their own paths to highlight the changes that affected their fortunes over the past century. As American agriculture changed, so has rural life in Delaware, but it is a story of hope and transformation. Over our history, Delaware’s farmers have adapted to changing conditions to ensure the continued success of agricultural enterprise and the vitality of rural life. At the Delaware Agricultural Museum, this important story will be told through a companion piece to the Crossroads: Change in Rural America exhibit featuring narrative panels focusing on the history of Woodside, Delaware (founded 1869). The town is representative of the ways in which Delaware’s rural communities have adapted to changes in American agriculture. Like many of her sister communities, Woodside came to be as a result of the expansion of the Delaware Railroad. The farms in the Woodside area also had a direct bearing on its development, these farms were, and remain, quite productive. Themes explored in the Crossroads exhibit will also complement and extend a new Museum exhibit exploring the impact of rural electrification on Delmarva. Crossroads: Change in Rural America has been made possible at the Delaware Agricultural Museum and Village by Delaware Humanities. Crossroads: Change in Rural America is part of Museum on Main Street, a collaboration between the Smithsonian Institution and State Humanities Councils nationwide. Support for Museum on Main Street has been provided by the United States Congress.

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The History of Delaware Mills will be back next week

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